Forty percent of children in Afghanistan, battered by four decades of conflict, are out of school, UNICEF said on Monday.
An estimated 24 million children of school age are not in school in 22 countries affected by conflict, the agency found. South Sudan has the largest proportion of children out of school, 51 percent, followed by 47 percent in Niger, 41 percent in Sudan, and 40 percent in Afghanistan.
When children are not in school, they are at an increased danger of abuse, exploitation, and recruitment into armed groups.Jo Bourne | UNICEF's Head of Education
“School equips children with the knowledge and skills they need to rebuild their communities once the conflict is over, and in the short-term it provides them with the stability and structure required to cope with the trauma they have experienced,” said Bourne.
Education is one of the least funded sectors by humanitarian agencies. In 2014, it received 2 percent of humanitarian aid. The UN said 10 times as much is needed for education in conflict zones.
Based on reporting by Reuters.
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